David Ames' Genre 10 - Rock Albums: #3 Alice In Chains

David Ames digs through his music collection to count down his top ten favourite albums in a specific music genre. This time, he salutes those about to rock and at #3 it's Dirt by Alice in Chains...

From a young age, I have had a close association with the rock genre. My father would listen to classic rock almost constantly when I was younger and so from basically my infancy I have been listening to Led Zeppelin, Kansas, The Who, The Beatles, Bad Company, Journey, Foreigner, and many others. My father was also the first to introduce me to bands like Pearl Jam, Stone Temple Pilots, and Bush, three of the bands that have influenced me more than any others. Rock will always hold a special place in my heart because of its incredibly impactful presence in my life. I know all of you wonderful readers will recognize at least 80 percent of this list and here’s hoping that it triggers some pleasant memories of days gone by.

Find the other albums in David's Genre 10 Rock Albums

#3: Alice in Chains – Dirt

Alice in Chains was another one of those bands that emerged during my musical awakening. They were borderline metal, although lumped into the grunge movement, and had arguably one of the greatest singers, not only of his time but of all time, in Layne Staley. Dirt, their second album, is a mature growth from Facelift, their first album. Not only are the songs better, the production quality is spectacular and the music is much more personal, dealing with anything from Jerry Cantrell’s father during the Vietnam War to Layne Staley’s deepening struggle with heroin. This album is also where they developed the guitar sound that Cantrell would eventually become known for. Not so much tone as much as density. On this album, Cantrell developed basically a wall of guitars that sounds so incredibly powerful and huge that everything lays overtop perfectly to create an immense sound. Alice in Chains was one of the bands that my first band played a ton. I think we learned somewhere around 7 or 8 songs and played them regularly. To this day I can still hear our singer’s sister screeching “ROOSTER” at the top of her lungs at damn near every show we played. Check this album out again to enjoy that classic early 90s sound that is so recognizable even today.



“Them Bones”

“Angry Chair”


“Down in a Hole”

Best non-single track:

“Rain When I Die”

Image - Amazon

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